Many people set savings goals at the start of a new year, only to realize midway through that they’re just not attainable. If your aim is to grow your savings by $10,000 or $15,000, that may be a challenging feat to pull off (though to be clear, that doesn’t mean it can’t be done).
On the other hand, if you have a more moderate savings goal, like boosting your savings by $2,000 this year, then that may be more reasonable, especially if you’re an average earner. At this point, we still have another 10 months to go before 2022 wraps up, which means if you’re hoping to see your savings account balance increase by $2,000, you’ll need to save $200 a month.
Now the good news is that saving $200 a month won’t necessarily require you to make extreme lifestyle changes (whereas saving $500 a month, for example, might only be doable if you downsize your home or give up a vehicle). Here are some relatively easy ways to scrounge up that cash.
1. Dine out less frequently
Many of us enjoy dining out, and it’s nice to try different cuisines and get a break from cooking on occasion. If you generally dine out a couple of times a week, replacing one restaurant meal a week with a home-cooked alternative could free up $100 a month for you. That right there gets you halfway to your savings goal.
2. Cancel a service you don’t use much
You may enjoy working out at the gym on occasion, or having cable for those weekends when you’re stuck at home and bored. But if you don’t tend to use your gym membership all that much and most of your cable channels go unwatched, you may want to cancel the former and downgrade the latter. Doing so could leave you $100 a month richer, which is half of what you need to hit your $200 monthly savings target.
3. Get a side hustle
It’s hard to hold down a side hustle when you already work full-time. But if you’re willing to put in a few hours a week, you may be able to earn an extra $200 a month so you don’t have to cut back on spending at all to meet your goals.
There are plenty of side hustles that could easily put an extra $50 a week in your pocket. Driving for a ride-hailing service a couple of nights a week could do the trick, as could giving up one evening per weekend to babysit. You can also look into side hustles that can be done from home, like writing, medical billing, data entry, or telemarketing.
A $2,000 savings boost could help you close out 2022 in a more financially secure place. If you’re aiming to reach that target, it may help to break that goal down into monthly milestones. From there, you can use these tips to eke out that savings.
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